Monday, December 12, 2016

How I sent my XMAS cards on time this year!


Each year I am determined to write, envelope and send all our friends, family and those special acquaintances (like the postman) Christmas cards and each year I only manage to send maybe just over half? So this year I had a plan, this would be the year where I wouldn't have any missed deadlines for sending overseas, I wouldn't be running around frantically looking/trying to buy more Christmas cards because I ran out! I would also NOT be stumbling upon cards I had written but somehow didn't make it in the send pile and fell into a drawer, back of the office desk or under the bed? Never to have reached it's recipient!! *Insert angry face here*

No, this year I had a system!



- WRITE A LIST -
I know, pretty obvious right? But seriously, without a list this isn't going to work. Also, without the proper kind of list, it wont work either. You need a formula for your list to work. What is it you ask? Well you write your list by location. Starting with the people furthest away from you.

For example, I categorized all my card recipients by their location, furthest away from me being Australia, then America, then France, then England, then Scotland, and finally ending with those I could literally walk down the street or hop in my car and post through the door myself!
This is the best way because the cards you should be writing and sending first will be the ones furthest away from you as they take longer to arrive.

It also helps to write two of the same list, one as written then as sent.
I used onenote.com notebook section to make up my list so I could check off as I went, plus there was no way of accidentally losing the list in a pile of papers (which is what I usually do)



- BUY/MAKE YOUR CARDS IN ADVANCE -
Another pretty obvious one, but it helps. I bought my cards last year after Christmas when they all went on sale and managed to keep them in a safe place until I needed to pull them out this year. My only problem was I was a little short as usual, but again I was prepared and gave myself time to make some extra at home.


- UPDATE YOUR ADDRESS BOOK -
Seriously, it turns out I'd been sending a Christmas card for the past two-three years to the wrong address because I hadn't bothered to ask if that person had moved and they had assumed they'd given me their new address. It's probably good to check each year just in case, people forget who've they've told or assumed someone passed the new address on.

Also, try and include your return address either on the envelope or inside the card each year, you might be surprised to find out how many people have been doing the same thing as you, sending you cards but to your old address!


- CHECK LAST POST/MAIL DATES -
A good way to keep and meet a deadline is to be for-warned. Make sure you know the last day to send that card by air mail so that it actually makes it there in time for Christmas! For those of you sending from the UK you can find these dates here. For those of you sending from USA you can find these dates here

- MAKE IT FUN -
Like anything, if you're not enjoying it even just a little then you're not going to do it, or at least you wont do it well. I decided I enjoyed writing my cards more because I used some metallic Gold and Silver pens to write the addresses on the envelope all fancy.
I did this by typing the address into ipiccy.com in the 'make a design' section, picking out the font I liked and copying it by eyesight onto the envelope. If that's a bit too difficult you can print each one out and then trace it onto the envelope instead. Learn how to do that here.


- SORT YOUR CARDS INTO PILES -
Sort written cards into location piles, In other words you should have a pile for Australia, a pile for USA etc. So they all stay together ready to be sent all together. To make things even easier, attach a list of each name to the card piles so after you've sent them you have reference of what cards you've sent instead of wondering "hold on, did I send Auntie Jacky that card or not? If I didn't where on earth is it?" no, this way you can physically see you've checked it off the list there and then!


- KEEP YOUR CARD PILES IN YOUR BAG -
Chances are if you're like me, you keep forgetting to pick them up when you leave the house. As soon as you've finished all your card piles, put them in the bag you regularly take with you when you leave the house, or put them in the car so they remind you to post them each time you see them.
This is also great if you bump into Sally from two towns over, guess what!? you have her card with you so you can hand it to her right there and then.... if you remember ;)

- SAVE ON POSTAGE -
Having your cards in your car means if you so happen to be a town over or you traveled down south/up north you can physically post cards through the door at the same time, rather than pay to post and also waste petrol (gas).

Another idea is that if you have kids you can make it a bit of an adventure and drive or walk around letting the kids post cards through the letterbox.

Also if you manage to buy your postage online it can sometimes be cheaper, especially if you're sending a parcel along with your card. It's always good to shop around/double check the prices before you send as the postie doesn't always give you all your price options but instead ones that will make him/her the most money. It's also good to know that Royal Mail use outside help to send parcels so they'll add an extra charge onto the price for profit, if you bypass the Royal Mail and go straight to the postage courier they would be using you may find you save money as the courier will charge you the same/similar rate they would have charged the Royal Mail.

- SIT BACK AND RELAX -
If you've manage to follow everything above then you'll have successfully sent your Christmas cards on time so now all you need to do is put the kettle on, sit back with a nice cuppa and smile. Until you realize you probably missed someone... just kidding, you're fine, you kept your lists and you checked them twice right?


Too late to accomplish this year? Pin this so you're prepared for next Christmas!

20 comments:

  1. Wow this is so organized! I have literally written four cards - all four for my daughters friends and haven't even started on mine. I need you in my life to help organise things!

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    1. Happy to hopefully have helped! It takes time, Like I said above, this is the first year I've gotten the formula right and managed to send them all in time! It's finding what works best for you.

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  2. You are definitely super organised :) I was really organised until we lost hubbies brother last week, now everything seems like a battle x

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    1. Aww well, I don't think anyone's expecting you to be super organized right now giving what's happened, and if they are then they really need to take a step back and look at themselves. My deepest sympathies to you and your family, especially so close to Christmas. This will be our first Christmas without my Husband's father as he also passed this year so I will raise and extra glass to your family also in such a hard time. x

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  3. I actually got mine out on time this year and used Scout post for the local ones. These are great tips and the best one is keeping the address book up to date. Mine has got a bit behind I'm afraid!

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    1. Oooo please indulge me, what is Scout post? That sounds interesting, do the local scouts post your letters? x

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  4. I am USELESS at doing this! I never get them out on time and sometimes not even at all! Fab tips! xx

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    1. It takes a little while to figure out what will keep you on track to get them done and sent. Maybe this post will help you this/next year!?

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  5. Your super organised i write my cards in advance but then end up posting them later than planned as I'm so busy I end up forgetting.

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    1. I've done that, and usually lose half of them without realizing it.

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  6. I'm terrible for having all the right ideas in my head, but then something goes horribly wrong and I end up with a pile of undelivered cards and somehow it got to January. But my Mother on the other hand makes lists and is very organised, so I think there may be something in this.

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    1. The lists have always helped me, if I don't make them I will misplace the cards or forget who I've sent to.

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  7. You are super organized. Out of the people I know it is very rare to receive a card, everyone seems to do everything on the internet these days!

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    1. And sometime's that's alright too. There's one thing that we can all relate to around Christmas, is the fact that we're all rushing around for the holidays hoping we've not forgotten anything, so when you forget to send cards I think it's more because of the chaos than anything. But it's nice to receive a physical card when you can which Is why I always try to send, to show that you were thinking of that person.

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  8. those are great tips! The cards look really cute, I'm sure everyone loved to received them :) x

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  9. This is a great post, you are so organised!! My husband wrote his work cards nice and early this year, usually we leave everything till the last minute.

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  10. I so need to get organised. I have now written all my cards and organised them. I just keep forgetting to take them with me whenever I see friends and family!

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  11. You are so organised! I am embarrassed to admit that I don't usually send out Xmas cards

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  12. I still have not written mine, I must get on with it :)

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